New analysis suggests environmental provisions should be included in African trade deals to promote sustainable agricultural growth

The flagship Africa Agricultural Trade Monitoring (AATM) project calls for diversification of import sources to mitigate the adverse impact of the Ukraine crisis.

According to the latest African Agricultural Trade Monitor (AATM), African trade agreements can boost agricultural imports and exports and limit the adverse effects of climate change by providing specific terms.

Published by AKADEMIYA2063 and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), AATM 2023 calls for coordinated action at the regional and continental levels towards sustainable trade flows and friendly trade policies more environmentally friendly. The report also examines the negative impacts of the Russia-Ukraine war on fertilizer and food trade, and recommends measures to mitigate the impact of shocks on countries and consumers. Africa.

Launched this year at the Africa Food Systems Forum (AGRF) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, AATM 2023 provides high-quality trade statistics using consistent indicators to track trends Africa’s participation in world trade as well as the status of intra-African trade. The report finds that Africa’s regional trade agreements (RTAs) have not had a significant impact on the country’s agricultural trade. Analysis suggests this is because the “shallow” trade agreements focus only on tariff reductions, with limited impact on agri-food markets. The study highlights opportunities to include provisions on non-tariff measures and strengthen their enforcement to promote intra-African agri-food trade. The report also calls on the RTA to include climate-related provisions to strengthen trade’s contribution to combating the negative impacts of climate change.

“In the face of global shocks like Ukraine and COVID-19, as well as the climate crisis, which has emerged as the biggest threat to the development of Africa’s agricultural trade, trade policy is needed. needed to take advantage of agri-food trade as a source of support. around Africa’s recovery and growth,” said Dr. Ousmane Badiane, Executive Chairman of AKADEMIYA2063. “AATM 2023 analyzes opportunities to “strengthen” trade agreements to strengthen intra-African trade, while prioritizing import diversification by exploiting the continent’s natural resources and deploy new and greener technologies to mitigate the impact of global shocks such as the Ukraine crisis. With the entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), policy reforms aimed at streamlining and harmonizing agriculture-related frameworks to enhance food security and increase market share in the global agricultural market for Africa will be added. value,” he said.

The report’s analysis draws lessons from Africa’s current commitments in applying them to future frameworks to strengthen continental integration. For example, the inclusion of enforceable provisions on non-tariff measures (NTMs), such as rules of origin and well-designed sanitary and phytosanitary measures (SPS) into agreements trade, could increase agricultural exports by up to 26%, likely through increased market confidence and increased demand.

In the context of temperatures rising by 0.3°C per decade from 1991 to 2021 and the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the war between Russia and Ukraine has added another layer to the already existing global market. chaotic. Dr Johan Swinnen, CEO said: “The Ukraine crisis has caused significant price increases and significant disruptions in supply chains for key sectors such as fertilizers and food, in particular especially wheat and vegetable oil, due to heavy dependence on imports from Ukraine and Russia. of IFPRI. “This year’s AATM includes important recommendations that will make Africa less vulnerable to such supply shocks, such as stronger social protection programs that build the resilience of vulnerable households, increase production on the continent to minimize import dependence as well as diversify imports.”

Agricultural trade between African countries has increased significantly since the early 2000s; however, 2021 figures show it remains below its peak value of $16.1 billion recorded in 2013. An analysis of the nutritional content of intra-African trade indicates that the product The main agricultural trade on this continent is pure sucrose, which accounts for 4%. of intra-African agricultural trade, while a closer look at the cotton value chain shows that African countries compete mainly in unprocessed products.

The report also assesses agricultural trade in the East African Community (EAC), revealing that the region has one of the highest agriculture-to-GDP ratios among the regional economic communities surveyed, as well as as the highest introversion index, indicating high intensity. of intra-regional relationships. trade. This is largely due to the absence of customs duties on intra-regional flows and high extra-regional tariffs as well as improved logistics efficiency.

The African Agricultural Trade Monitor is produced and published within the framework of the African Growth and Development Policy Paradigm Consortium (AGRODEP) and its regional strategic analysis and knowledge support system. ReSAKSS”. programs as part of the collaborative efforts of AKADEMIYA2063 and IFPRI. The annual flagship report builds on the work of the two organizations in support of the Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Program (CAADP). The 6th edition was presented during the “Trade and Markets” plenary session of the AGRF Summit 2023.

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